After two series losses in a row, the Reds finally ensured a series victory last night by beating the Brewers 3-4 in the second game. Bronson Arroyo had a no-hitter through seven and a third but still got a no-decision when he suddenly lost his magic and let the Brewers tie it up in the eighth.
Fortunately, Sean Marshall and Aroldis Chapman were able to hold the Brew Crew back long enough to make Drew Stubbs’ home run in the bottom of the eighth into the winning run.
The brooms are in hand as the team goes for the sweep this afternoon. It won’t be a walk in the park though; Homer Bailey (5-5, 4.20 ERA) takes on Zack Greinke (8-2, 2.81 ERA). Greinke is actually on a hotter streak than that even with a 1.46 ERA over his last 5 starts.
Let Me See that Tootsee Roll
Before last night, Aroldis Chapman had blown his last two save opportunities, making himself (specifically, the suitability of his particular talents to the closer role) the primary topic of conversation among Reds fans.
So, you’d expect him to be excited when he shut down the Brewers to protect the 1-run lead in the ninth inning. But did you expect him to do two forward rolls in exuberant celebration?
Dusty Baker wasn’t that excited about the demonstration of human emotion, saying, “I know he was happy, especially after that bad week, but we don’t play like that.” And some of the other players weren’t so keen on it either. Brandon Phillips said in a tweet “Great all around W tonight except for the 2 front roll flips at the end, but at least he didn’t get hurt!”
Fans are either saying, “so what? he was excited,” or “he’s broken the unwritten rules by showing up the other team and brought down the wrath of the baseball gods upon us!” It’s probably true that the Brewers will hit someone during today’s game in retribution for “being shown up” even though even they must surely realize those flips had everything to do with Chapman and nothing to do with them. With their 33-41 record and fourth-place position in the NLC, frankly, the Brewers aren’t worth showing up.
What to Say to Sound Smart at the Water Cooler
Today’s pitcher, Homer Bailey, has been the victim of the most blown saves this season with 3. If he can get the win tomorrow, maybe he’ll be doing cartwheels.